AGENTS OF MAYHEM
Available on Xbox One, PS4 and PC
From Deep Silver, the publisher behind the basket-case open-world game series Saints Row, comes a new adventure of the superhero kind – AGENTS OF MAYHEM!
Under the guidance of no-nonsense Persephone, a bunch of hero super agents are recruited to defeat super villain Morningstar and his shadowy Legion who plan on taking over the world. As a player, it’s your task to destroy Legion utilising the super capabilities of three agents of your choice.
Single player, third person game AGENTS OF MAYHEM is all about fun and it doesn’t waste much time in stating that fact. With a story-setting cutscene establishing the basics of the plot, we’re quickly introduced to our first set of super agents: Hollywood (the pretty boy, former film star and general solid all-rounder), Hardtack (a big hulk of a guy who’s slow but powerful, just like his shotgun) and the whizz Fortune (quick and nimble but likely to take damage easily). Each of the agents each have their own unique set of skills and special abilities and with the option to change between the three during gameplay, you can choose which one suits best for the current situation and enemy. Loaded into levels with tasks such as hacking computers, reaching checkpoints and destroying Legion henchmen, you must utilise the agents’ skills to traverse the level, defeat the bad guys and complete the task at hand.
Colourful and witty, AGENTS OF MAYHEM is a really easy game to get into. A tutorial level gets you acquainted with the simple controls and before you know it, you’re blowing up everything in sight, killing enemies with your laser gun and double/triple jumping everywhere because…well… you can. It’s loads of fun that doesn’t require much brain power but after an hour or so, you begin to realise that between shooting stuff and bouncing all over the show, that this is as varied as the gameplay gets. Being introduced to the city of Seoul where you can commandeer a variety of vehicles, most of which handle like a basic Grand Theft Auto game, gives an almost open-world aspect to the game but ultimately there’s not much to do other than play the missions. It’s during these missions you get introduced to more super agents, like bow-wielding Rama, which you’ll be able to choose from once recruited and unlocked in the game. As each mission usually features specific types of enemies, making sure you have the right characters fit for the job in your play slots is paramount.
Like most games in this sort of genre, the more you play and complete tasks, the more points you unlock to upgrade weapons, gadgetry and stats. Not much is explained about this from the start though so when you go back to the hub, aka the Ark, and get your gremlins to upgrade you, it can be a bit vague on what the best route is other than the description each upgrade gives you. Other games usually introduced this factor into the game with visible prompts but AGENTS OF MAYHEM prefers the more subtle approach you need to seek out yourself.
After ploughing a few hours into the game, it’s evident it’s quite a monotonous experience. Not an unpleasant one, but one with a story I couldn’t really care less about. The repetitive action can be a bit of a bore but if you’re short on time and prefer to jump in and out of games a lot, then this game is just the ticket. The simple controls are pretty easy to remember and refamiliarise yourself with, especially as the keybinding to the Xbox 360 Controller for Windows operates exactly as you would expect (RT for gun, A for jump, LB + RB for super duper mayhem ability) and the objective of destroying most things in sight, enemy or otherwise, along with racing through the streets of Seoul in a car, makes AGENTS OF MAYHEM quite an enjoyable bit of gameplay for the odd hour.
Whilst there’s good and bad to say about this game, there’s one thing that might be a deciding factor, at least for the moment: the price. Selling at £40, which is what many AAA titles with a lot more to offer release at, might be a stumbling block for many people and it certainly seems overpriced for what the game offers especially as the game only offers single player support.
As a game to get stuck into, AGENTS OF MAYHEM leaves much to be desired, both in story and variety, but for gamers looking for brainless fun for half an hour spurts, this game is just the ticket.